Posts Tagged ‘pv’

Heroic Photovoltaic Backpack Solar Man Graces San Francisco – His Achilles Heel is Fog, Not Kryptonite

Thursday, May 23rd, 2013

IDK, if I had a backpack like this, I’d probably give it to someone who could use it, you know, somebody living off the grid or in an arid, equatorial land…

Click to expand

If CanadianSolar is a Chinese Company, Why is It Called CanadianSolar? Ai-Yah! What’s That All Aboot, Eh?

Friday, July 22nd, 2011

Just as Soylent Green Is People, CandianSolar is Chinese. This company is straight outta Suzhou.

Most investors believe this is a Canadian company. Well, that isn’t 100% true. Let me put it this way: Canadian Solar is a Chinese solar company with deep roots in the Canadian solar market.”

So why don’t they call themselves ChineseSolar?

Oh, because of the thing, that’s right, I remember now.

Click to expand.

OK fine.

Those New Solar and Wind-Powered LED Streetlights Don’t Install Themselves, Right?

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011

This was the scene today in front of the State Building in Civic Center. So pretty soon, those orange-tinted night shots you’ve been taking on the streets of San Francisco will be history.

Why? ‘Cause Uncle Sucker is paying the City and County of San Francisco money to put in cooler LED lighting. That means that your night-time cell phone shots will look much better.

Click to expand

Hurray!

A Close-Up View of Our New Civic Center Sustainability District, with Windmills, Solar Panels and LEDs

Friday, December 24th, 2010

Our Civic Center Sustainability District up close.

See? Windmills, solar panels and LED streetlights:

Enjoy.

A Mystery Solved: Windmills are Back in Civic Center – “Sustainability Resource District” Kicks Off With 600 Watt Generators

Friday, December 17th, 2010

Remember this mystery from yesterday? Well, turns out it’s just the Civic Center Sustainability District getting started.

Here it is, a “vertical axis wind turbine.” Or, a windmill, your choice:

All the deets, after the jump

(more…)

Photovoltaic Solar Panels Have Come to San Franciscos Public Housing Projects

Tuesday, January 26th, 2010

That big residential solar project in the Lower Haight / Western Addition / Hayes Valley from SunWheel Energy Partners just went live. The juice, she  is flowing.

See all the deets in this 15 minute video - it’s just like being there.

San Francisco Assessor-Recorder Phil “The Thrill” Ting was there for the ribbon-cutting…

…as was District 5 Supervisor Ross “The Boss” Mirkarimi:

San Francisco Affordable Housing Sites Power On Solar Energy
 
Federal, State and Local Officials, Site Residents and Community Members Celebrate Green Energy and New Jobs at Western Addition Ribbon Cutting Ceremony
 
San Francisco, CA, January 26, 2010 – On Monday, January 25, 2010, Sunwheel Energy Partners, which provides turnkey solar energy systems for urban and community partners, celebrated the commissioning of solar photovoltaic (PV) systems at three affordable housing community sites in San Francisco’s Western Addition and Hayes Valley neighborhoods — bringing solar power, green jobs and financial relief to residents and owners.  The ribbon cutting ceremony at Plaza East Apartments was widely attended by a notable group of federal, state and local officials as well as the site’s residents and community members who were hired to install the solar panels.
 
Dignitaries in attendance included Henry Alvarez, Executive Director, San Francisco Housing Authority; Timothy Alan Simon, CPUC Commissioner; Phil Ting, SF Assessor-Recorder; David Rubin, Director of Service Analysis, PG&E; Michael Carlin, SFPUC Deputy General Manager; Neola Gans, Vice President, SF Housing Authority Commission; Caroline Krewson, Deputy Regional Director, U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development; Stephen Schneller, Director, San Francisco Office of Public Housing; Ross Mirkarimi, San Francisco Supervisor; and representatives of Speaker Nancy Pelosi and U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer’s offices. Senator Mark Leno issued a proclamation commending the site.

Even more deets, after the jump

(more…)

Photovoltaic Solar Panels Coming to San Francisco’s Public Housing Projects

Tuesday, July 7th, 2009

Well, read all about it. Rooftop solar is coming to the Hayes Valley North, and South, and Plaza East housing projects in the greater Western Addition / Lower Haight area.

The Future is Now. Click to expand:

IMG_9820 copy

The mise-en-scene this morning, including Mayor Gavin Newsom, Rev. Amos Brown, Public Utilities Commission Director Ed Harrington, District 8 Supervisor hopeful Laura Spanjian, and Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s Deputy District Director Melanie Nutter. The roof you can see upper left is slated for a panel or two:

IMG_9835 copy

Mr. Mayor was going on about San Francisco being number one in California rooftop photovoltaic solar installations on a per capita basis - his statement was just one caveat shy of being operational. It would appear the rich yuppies and less-rich granolas of ridiculously-named Nevada City, California, to name just one city, have erected a ginourmous number of rooftop panels. Maybe he meant San Francisco County. Oh, here’s the caveat – “large” city. Doesn’t match what he was actually saying today, but that fixes the error. In front of a sample PV panel and betwixt MLK and Barack Obama from somebody’s bedroom window across the street:

IMG_9832 copy

So how much is “365 kw?” Well, I’m not sure what that figure means. It could mean maximum power in ideal conditions. You’ll just have to do an install and then measure what you get on a sunny day, ’cause every installation of PV is unique. If it helps to compare, the 5.4 litre engine from a used Ford Mustang Shelby GT500 can put out more power than what the solar panels at Hayes Valley North, and South, and Plaza East together will be capable of producing at maximum.

(In other vehicular matters, no, the mayor’s SUV wasn’t sitting idling during the entire event - that’s an improvement.)

And in other vehicular matters once again, this was the scene at the end of the block where the news conference was held. Scratch one laptop. Is it being fenced right now? Probably.

Oh well.

IMG_9812 copy

The Fixing Broken Windows theory in action.

Anywho, el comunicado de prensa de hoy:

 MAYOR NEWSOM ANNOUNCES FIRST SOLAR INSTALLATIONS AT S.F. PUBLIC HOUSING  SITES; CREATES GREEN-COLLAR JOBS

 Newsom also announces 450% increase in San Francisco solar applications since inception of solar rebate program

Mayor Gavin Newsom today announced plans to install over 365 kw of
solar panels on the San Francisco Housing Authority properties of
Hayes Valley North and South and Plaza East through San Francisco’s
GoSolarSF Initiative. The solar panels will provide hundreds of thousands
of kilowatts of clean, renewable electricity to public housing residents.
The project is expected to create 25 jobs and be completed by the end of
the year.
“With initiatives like GoSolarSF, San Francisco is lighting the way with
solar power,” said Mayor Newsom. “Solar power will reduce greenhouse gases,
grow our green economy, and lead the state towards a future of clean,
renewable energy.”

More deets after the jump.

(more…)

San Francisco’s Old-School Victorian Houses Go Solar Photovoltaic

Thursday, May 28th, 2009

Now back in the day, rooftop solar meant routing black water pipes up there, so you could heat your water for free. High tech photovoltaic panels, where sunlight converts directly to electricity, were reserved for astronauts ‘n stuff.

But these days, you can fork over $27,000 for a 3 KW system and you’ll end up making your own electricity with something like this on your pointy, pointy roof.

As seen on Ashbury Street near Haight in sometimes sunny San Francisco:

Click to expand

Ridiculous Front-Loaded 25-Year Solar Project is a Go in San Francisco

Tuesday, May 12th, 2009

This project doesn’t make sense without the money from the Feds.

This project doesn’t make sense WITH money from the Feds.

What makes this project “front loaded” is that the primary benefit appears to be the ability to distribute the press release below today, as opposed to a few months or years from now. Enjoy.

Somewhere under all that soup below Sutro Tower will go the photovoltaic panels:

Supervisor Chris Daly, who favored a second look at the details this scheme, says that he won’t come back eight years from now to say “I told you so.”

But don’t hold him to that come 2017.

                          *** PRESS RELEASE ***
 Mayor Newsom Hails Approval of California’s Largest Solar Photovoltaic
                    Installation at Sunset Reservoir
  5 MW Project Will More than Triple San Francisco’s Total Solar Energy
                                 Output
SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Mayor Gavin Newsom today lauded the Board of
Supervisors’ approval of a five megawatt (MW) solar installation for the
roof of the Sunset Reservoir in San Francisco. When completed in 2010, the
project will be California’s largest solar photovoltaic (PV) installation
and more than triple San Francisco’s total municipal solar energy output
from 2 MW today to 7 MW. The Board’s approval of a 25-year contract between
the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) and San
Francisco-based Recurrent Energy will deliver clean, renewable solar power
for City municipal services and facilities, including public schools, San
Francisco International Airport, SF General Hospital, Muni and more. The
project will also create more than 70 local green jobs, including at least
21 jobs for individuals in the City’s workforce development programs.
“Today San Francisco took another major step towards achieving our
commitments to reduce greenhouse gases and grow our green economy,” said
Mayor Newsom, who sponsored the legislation. “With this single project, we
will more than triple San Francisco’s solar energy production, build
California’s largest photovoltaic system, and help lead the state towards a
future of clean, renewable energy.”
“I’m proud that my district will soon be home to California’s largest solar
PV installation,” said Supervisor Carmen Chu, who co-sponsored the
legislation with Mayor Newsom, and whose district includes the 8-square
block Sunset Reservoir, the City’s largest. “I want to thank the
environmental community, my colleagues on the Board, the SFPUC and
Recurrent Energy for forging this smart public-private partnership that
will rapidly expand our green power resources.”
The agreement between the SFPUC and Recurrent Energy leverages a 30%
federal tax credit available only to the private sector through a “Power
Purchase Agreement” (PPA) to dramatically lower project costs. Over the 25
year life of the contract, the City estimates that the power purchased from
the project will cost $50.3 million, $36 million less than the lifetime
cost of $86.3 million had the City built and financed the system
themselves. Under the agreement, Recurrent Energy also assumes all the risk
of financing, building and operating the project. The SFPUC is only
responsible for purchasing the solar power produced at a competitive rate.
The measure was also co-sponsored by Supervisors Bevan Dufty, Michela
Alioto-Pier, and Eric Mar.
“With this agreement San Francisco can continue to be a leader in
developing the solar energy markets while taking concrete steps towards
meeting our renewable energy and greenhouse gas reduction goals,” said
SFPUC General Manager Ed Harrington.
“Recurrent Energy is proud to partner with the City of San Francisco to
create local green jobs now and deliver clean solar public power for the
future,” said Recurrent Energy’s CEO, Arno Harris.

Oh well.

Does San Francisco Really Want to Build a Solar Plant in the Foggy Sunset?

Monday, May 4th, 2009

The proposed Sunset Reservoir Solar Project from Recurrent Energy is in the news lately. I understand how photovoltaic cells can work even in the fog, but fog can have a big impact on solar electric production, right? Does our unique climate play a role in the decision of where to build this thing? 

Now of course, our cemeteries are outside the city limits, as is SFO for that matter. Is this public/private partnership is the best we can come up with?  

The dreary Sunset District, yesterday, 1:00 PM:

Let’s see if the FAQ helps:

Why doesn’t the City build the system?
Pending Board of Supervisors approval in first quarter of 2009, the project would be on track to begin construction in the summer of 2009 and complete in first quarter of 2010.

Is that a responsive answer?

Why was this location selected?
This location was chosen because it is one of the largest reservoirs and rooftops owned by the city. The recent seismic upgrade of the roof over the Sunset Reservoir’s north basin makes it strong enough for the installation of solar panels. While located in the Sunset district, the solar resource is still very good, on average only 15% lower than the sunniest areas of the City.

Again, is that a responsive answer? We have to build solar on rooftops and reservoirs because…why?

Why does the system need to be located within the city?
The City needs electricity generated inside San Francisco. Starting in 1998, the City made efforts to shutter old polluting power plants within San Francisco. In 2006, Hunter’s Point power plant was permanently closed and subsequently demolished. The Potrero Hill power plant was also under discussion for closure, but the California Independent System Operator (Cal-ISO) has determined that the Potrero Hills [yes, "Hills" - howdy stranger, welcome to San Francisco!] power plant cannot be decommissioned until new transmission or generation is added within San Francisco. This project will add much needed generation to the City of San Francisco.

So this tiny little project, which will produce something like 1% of the juice generated by the Mirant plant, is a kind of substitute for the Mirant plant? Really?

Perhaps the lowest bidder didn’t come in low enough?